Mi Yong Cho
Head of Human Resources, Sumitovant
Mi Yong, you are the head of HR at Sumitovant. Tell us about your role. What are your responsibilities?
As the Head of HR, I am responsible for leading Sumitovant’s people strategy and building a culture that drives strategic success for Sumitovant. The Human Resources business is comprised of various functions that collectively aim to uphold the future health of our business by hiring, developing, retaining, and rewarding our talent. It is our responsibility to ensure our employees understand and are aligned with our values, and that our initiatives reinforce those values.
Who are your closest internal partners in your role?
I partner closely with the executive leadership team. Whether it is helping leaders support their business goals or collaborating on strategic initiatives, each member of the executive leadership team is a key partner. In particular, I work very closely with Myrtle Potter, our CEO, Tara Soni, our Head of Legal & Compliance, and Yuichi Haruyama, our Executive Vice President of Finance and Corporate Strategy. 2020 is Sumitovant’s inaugural year. During 2020, we not only stood Sumitovant up as a company, but led numerous strategic initiatives. All of this was possible due to Myrtle’s leadership and the close partnership of the executive leadership team.
What’s your favorite part of the job? What are the challenges?
My favorite part of the job is building. I love that we are a new company and that we have the opportunity to build everything from the ground up. Over the course of the past year, we have built our culture, strategic business plans, and operational infrastructure, just to name a few. I find great joy and passion in creating programs, strategies, and processes where none existed before, and knowing that the HR team and I are making a real impact on the success of Sumitovant.
Can you think of a point when your career took an unexpected turn that put you on the path to now?
There have been a couple of unexpected turns throughout my career. The most recent unexpected turn was leaving the financial services industry after close to 20 years to join a biotech startup. I started my career in investment banking. I was an economics major in college, and I hold an MBA. I strongly believe in the importance of financial markets and institutions and had no intention of leaving the industry. However, when the opportunity came up to join Roivant in 2018, I was intrigued. I was drawn to how Roivant and Vivek Ramaswamy were using data and technology to disrupt the pharmaceutical industry. Having worked at a data- and technology-driven hedge fund for the past eight years, I felt I could add value to Roivant. Since joining Roivant, and now at Sumitovant, I love working for a mission-driven company, where what we do has a very real impact on patients and their families.
In your opinion, what is the biggest impact Sumitovant can have on patients and the world?
Although we are a young company that does not yet have the brand-name recognition of the larger pharmaceutical companies, I believe our impact will be huge. We have a pipeline of products that span multiple therapeutic areas, including women’s health, urology, and rare diseases. In addition, through our DrugOme and Digital Innovation teams, we are demonstrating the impact that technology and data science can have on the biopharma industry. Innovation through data and technology will ultimately have the biggest impact on patients’ lives by enabling biopharma companies to make better decisions and bring drugs to market more quickly. I believe Sumitovant is and will continue to be at the forefront of that.